Inkpop Blog

Write, Read, Connect

Help inkpop

Posted by inkpopbecki on May 21, 2010


We know the joy of inkpop is that it is a community created almost entirely by you; well, now is your chance to help us make a bigger, better site. We’re talking about changing some things up on inkpop, but we want to hear from you first.

Every week we’re going to try to run a question and answer blog post to find out what you would like to see on inkpop. Our first question is this: A lot of you have come to us and told us that you would like to be rewarded for some of the things you do here on the site. We think that’s a great idea. We’re in the process of talking about how to highlight some of your activities and we’ve come up with the idea of badges.

If we were to create a Badge System, what would you like to have badges for doing?

Comment back here and let us know. Your opinions are important to us.

50 Responses to “Help inkpop”

  1. Dana said

    Hi guys! I’m really glad you guys are reaching out to us inkpoppers!

    I’ll make a short list of the things I’d like to see. I recommend contacting EvieJ, your mod, as she has a really great list of changes.
    Most of the things I list are NOT my original idea, I’ve just seen them talked about on the forums.
    1) Swap boxes: A way for members to list if they are or are not open to swap reads . Also a box for who owes them reads, who they need to read and a “read list” (much like the watch list, but public) so people can keep track of things they want to read.
    2) Neater forum categories. A section for character chats and collabs, and a area for swap advertisments. I’d also like to see the “hottest threads” be something other than character chats >.<
    3) As for the Badge System you brought up, I think people should be ranked on how many days it takes for return swaps, length of critique and activity in forums. IT should be about being a helpful, kind inkpopper. This can all be tracked in the "swap boxes" I spoke of in #1.

    This is all I can think of for now, but I'll be back.


    • Ava said

      I have a few suggestions:
      1. There should be some badges for finishing a book, or a short story, getting to a number of certain poems and books.
      2. When someone adds us to their friends list, or we get new comments, or messages and we’re online. I’d like a little box to pop up in one of the corners on the screen to tell us. That way it’s easier to get back to the person sooner.
      3. RATINGS! I want to be able to give someone 1 * to 5 *****
      4. I’m glad your doing this for us! I think we should have chat boxes, for people who collabo. Instead of using messages that are public we can just request to chat with them if they’re online and they can either decline or accept. And either person can leave the chat, or close it.
      That’s all I got, for now. Thanks for reaching out to us and asking for our opinion!

      • Alli Bee said

        I really like all of these ideas!!! I really love the Facebook-like chat box idea. I hate it when I need to give someone my email, and everyone gets to see it. I had to make another email! -grin-
        Thumbs up to inkpop for asking for our ideas!!! Biggest problem on the site, though? No swap boxes. See my other comment below for a very, VERY, detailed synopsis.

    • Evie said

      Aw, thanks, Dana!! *hugs*

    • HealedMyWings said

      What Dana said. I had something to add, but I’m too tired to think of it right now … until then, I second Dana’s proposals.

      ~Tori, HealedMyWings

  2. Evie said

    YES!!!! I’m lovin’ this idea!!!!


    If we were to create a Badge System, what would you like to have badges for doing?

    I think people need to know who they can trust with returning reads and returning reads well. I think “badges” should be given to those who leave great comments that are balanced with constructive criticism and tell one what they did well. And those who also return all reads. I’m guessing we need “trust badges” or something. But also not given to those who are hardly on. And by that I mean: There are people who get online to pick and keep up their trendsetter rank, leave a comment or two, and then leave again for weeks.

    I think if we had badges, they need to be for trendsetters, meaning the trendsetters aren’t people who just pick books just to pick them. And yes, that happens. Why else do you think the top trendsetters always have books in common? People pick books without reading them or commenting to keep up their rank. To me, a way to make InkPop better is to give the top ranks to those who are actually incredibly involved in the site, on the forums (NOT the character chats; those shouldn’t count at all), commenting, leaving constructive criticism, etc…And NOT one lined comments.

    Only thing is, I’m not sure how any of this would work. And how people would know who has a badge and who doesn’t (well, I guess that would be apparent with my second suggestion). How would people get these badges? Who would scout the thousands of members to see who gets one and who doesn’t? That seems like a lot of hard work. And what’s the point really? If someone has a badge…I don’t know. To be quite honest, I think what InkPop really needs isn’t the badges right now. There’s a bunch of other things that would make the site better, but that’s for another time! haha!

    *is ready for the next question*


    Another suggestion: this post should stay up much longer because no one ever comes to the blog and as soon as blog posts are posted, they’re gone 😦

    • libredesprit said

      There is a time and there is a place for badges, and this is neither. I agree and think that InkPop should perhaps be worrying about the larger issues.
      Badges would be cool, but are not as vital as the other pending improvements.

  3. Michelle said

    I agree with Evie. I’m not sure what the need for badges is when you really start to look at it. Especially because if you do give them to people who leave good comments and return reads promptly, there’s still always the chance someone would be overlooked just because they might not be recognized by most people on the site, if say that person is active commenting but not so much active in forums.

    I think it’s a nice idea to recognize people who do well on the site or have something interesting to contribute (such as the people who make different critique groups or the rules about how to honestly comment that someone made), but it does run that risk of someone getting offended because THEY didn’t get a badge and so-and-so did. And on a site with predominantly teen members, it is likely jealousy or hurt feelings could arise. Just getting a little badge doesn’t seem like it’s worth all the potential drama it could cause.

    But if badges must be something that inkpop decides to have, I would prefer to see them given out to those who do leave good comments or something like that, even if they aren’t someone active on the forums. Not everyone who is active on the site in general participates in forums, and they deserve recognition, too.

  4. libredesprit said

    I think that getting a badge should depend on:

    – if you are an active member (go online a lot, rate and comment and pick a lot of projects)

    – if you submit a project (then you would be an official writer)

    – if one of your works gets published

    The thing I do not think should be rewarded is your forum participation.

    No more ideas for now, but am eagerly awaiting the next question!


  5. Kalia said

    1# I agree. Badges feel a bit like … unfair, in ways.

    But, if there was going to be badges I think it should rather be decided on comments done because if it is for general envolvement there are a lot of inkpoppers who don’t go on forums, when I first registered, I wouldn’t even agree to friend requests till I realised inkpop was a safe community.

    I don’t know if the problem with the badges would be jealousy, I think badges might actualy lead people to get more envolved to get one OR it might make people think of it as a Noddy Badge, which teens would reduce to a kiddies site.
    If the badges were given with reason (and a lot of reason) like a merit and not only for forum envolvement then maybe it could work and work well.

    2# A read box (From above) would be great!

  6. rainshadow said

    I agree with all the things you said, like swap boxes, but I don’t think it should be on length of critique or anything, because I can’t crit. I can’t. I really really just CAN’T. The only things I can point out in a crit are things like misspelled words and bad grammar, I can’t detect that show and tell stuff or rushing (well… only if it’s major).
    Also, if they have a really good badge, they might get drowned with swaps and reads and stuff.

    I think there sohuld be boxes where you say NO READ REUQUESTS and SWAPS ACCEPTED or something like that. Also, you could maybe have list of projects up the top so swappers could see what they’re up with.

  7. hyz said

    I think that the most important thing to give badges for would be comments given on other projects. Now, there are a lot of people who just leave one-liner comments, and while each writer might have different feelings about those, I think we can all agree that they are rarely helpful.

    That’s why I’d suggest giving badges for milestone comments over a certain word count. Say, a word count of 150, and milestones of 25, 50, 100, 200, etc.

    150 is a lower number than I’d go personally, but for diplomacy sake.

  8. NightWriter said

    Badges. I think this will probably be a difficult thing to decide. I personally am not online a lot just because I don’t have the time and when I do have the time, I want to read something that’s good, shows talent, but isn’t so perfect that there isn’t anything for me to critique. When I comment, I almost always critique, but because I’m not online a lot, I don’t give out a lot of critiques. Also, I’m not involved in the Forums, really, because if I’m on, I’d rather be reading people’s work, so I agree that badges shouldn’t be related to the Forums.

    Now, the ideas for a Read box and Swap box are good, for an Inkpopper’s own personal organization, and I also like the idea of a chat box and notifications, like on Facebook.

    Also, maybe for the Browse Writing page, instead of putting the Top Picks at the top, so everyone ends up looking at those and commenting on those, that should be put more at the bottom so the less-known, less-commented-on works can get some much-needed attention.

    • Kelseyleigh said


      I agree with the Read box and Swap box idea and also that the Top Picks should appear at the bottom of the page so that other works can receive comments. In addition to that idea, I think we should be able to block being picked. Obviously, most people will not do this, but the main idea behind blocking picks is for those people who have already been in the Top Picks. If you go on most of their profiles/books, most ask that you do NOT pick their book because they’ve already been in the top picks and it is not fair to the other inkpoppers. Despite their requests, however, their books still have hundreds of picks, which is, as they said, not fair to all of the other wannabe-top-picks. So this would be a way for inkpoppers who have already been Top Picked to stop other inkpoppers from picking their stories and allowing other hidden gems to be found, in a sense. =P

      Anyways, as for badges, I agree that it is not the most pertinent issue on the site, however, if they were to be created, I suggest having badges for such things as swaps, good comments, etc. as other people have suggested. I think it would also be cool if these badges could somehow have a play into your rank, as well.

      Well, that’s all I have for now. =) Thanks for considering our opinions!

      ~Kelseyleigh, Littlun

  9. Joana said

    I personally don’t see the point of badges. I’ve been on sites that have achievement awards like that and all they really do is create elitism for the people that have them and hurt feelings and resentment for the people that don’t. The inkpop community isn’t made purely of the people you see all over the place, with a million forum posts, five full books and a top pick.

    • HobbitFeet said

      I completely agree with this. I do not want to see badges on this site.

    • Alli Bee said

      I think badges is a great idea!!!!! It would not only motivate people to get more involved in the site, but it would make people feel more achieved if they can actually show people “Hey! Look! I actually follow-up swaps!”

      • Joana said

        People who follow up on swaps or are great at critiquing should be appreciated for it by the community, not a random site admin that gives them the badge. If they’re really good at something, people won’t need a few hundred pixels on a profile to know about it.

    • EscapingMyImagination said

      I agree that it will make everyone jealous and such, but we shouldhave something like badges that have:

      A milestone of works posted, like 50 or something
      For putting up their first work
      For getting work published
      For having a top five work

      There could also be one that could be given that is the inkpoper of the week award

    • HoodedEmo said

      I also agree. Not to say that the badge system isn’t a clever idea, but it would also cause several problems.

  10. HobbitFeet said

    One of the only things I have wanted to see for a long time is the ability to move your projects to where you want them to be. At the time being, the oldest project are at the top and newest are at the bottom. I think that we should all have the ability to place out projects wherever we feel is good on our pages. I would probably have my book at the top, my short stories under that and by poetry under that. At the time being it is all mixed up in a confusing mish-mash that doesn’t really do anything any justice.

    • HobbitFeet said

      Whoops, sorry, I’m kinda ‘out of it’ today. I didn’t read the whole synopsis about this for this before posting. Ignore this whole thing please.

  11. MIC said

    I find it interesting that some people are wanting rewards … I think just being part of the site is a reward in itself … the rewards are getting great feedback on your book and being able to learn from reading such great work. I only see giving badges as another way of creating tension between members …

    The whole site is based on competition in a way … is it smart to add another layer
    of competition? Might not be good for the moral …

    • MIC said

      But on the flip side, maybe some members need something like a badge to feel appreciated? Hence lifting moral? Hmmm …

  12. Shirley R. Kleiner said

    I agree with what dana said, and I’d like to add one thing. I think badges should be awarded for those who consistently give good critiques, that way, when someone wants true feedback, they know who will give it!

    I’d also like to stress that these badges aren’t ‘rewards’ in my mind, they are just pointing out a job well done to those who have gone above and beyond, because if you are just doing it for rewards then you aren’t doing it from the heart.

  13. Carrie said

    I’m not to fond of the badge system either. I’d kill the whole idea because like many have said, there are more pressing issues, and it is just another way to create even more competition.

  14. Alli Bee said

    I would love badges, and I think they should definitely be on the site (eventually), but there are 2 or 3 things that should be put in place to make a badge system easier. CAUTION: THIS IS NOT REALATED TO BADGES, BUT SOMETHING WE REALLY NEED.
    A swap box, for example. It would just be a sort of message box, above the comment posting box, that would just be specifically for swaps (and things of that nature). A check box would be at the top, with a few options, like “read request” or “swap”. There would be a blank line (like the one where you put your email, for example, when you post a comment) to put the name of the book you want them to read. If you checked “swap”, there could be another line to say which project you would be willing to read. Then, for the user, whenever they get a swap request, a little notification box pops up along the bottom of the screen, saying so-and-so just sent you a swap/read request. Then, underneath “My Projects”, it would list all of your swap/read requests- this would be visible to everyone. Then, you could check “Accept” or “Decline”. If you check “Decline”, the request is deleted.
    Sorry this was so long, but I mean well. Now you know exactly, EXACTLY, what we want. -grin-
    There are a few other things, put this post is WAY to long already…

    • NightWriter said

      I like this form of it and I think it would work well in helping people stay organized with their swaps. I’m sure I’d use this.

  15. EscapingMyImagination said

    I also like the idea of swap boxes and read boxed, becaue I have a hard trouble keeping up with mine adn it would be nice to have something that would help

  16. kimberley said

    tell you thr truth i think that something on the profiles should be changed,

    some people like to write poams, other short shorts, or even book. i think there should be a folder for each one so our profiles dont look so long, it would make it easyer to find stuff as well ^^

    Like i have 1 poam and three storys and already it maks my profile look a litlle messy, what if some one had 6 poams or more and like 4 short storys and maybe 1 book? it would be a very long list of there projects

    you should find a way to make it shorter, and not look so much like a list, and very long list no one wants to go through

    • NightWriter said

      I also like this idea. I have a whole lot of works up and I think more of them would be read if they were easier to navigate on my profile.

  17. Evie said

    The more I think about it, the more I’m leaning toward…this isn’t a very good idea. :\ At first, I was “eh-eh,” but now I’m more against it. I agree with others that it’s adding competition that InkPop doesn’t need. I think for people to get “recognized” which seems what this idea is about:
    *The contests/challenges need to be based on work and not by random selection. People need to be recognized by the work that they do in a short amount of time rather than just putting something in and hoping their name is chosen.
    *The InkPopper of the Week should stay up somehow for an actual week, or at least more than one day. There are people who’ve been on this site for a long time and just found out about the IotW. :\
    Other than that, I really don’t think there’s anything else that would give people recognition without causing more competition and whatnot.

  18. Nella said

    I would love a voting system. Like instead of picks?
    Vote for your favorite projects each month for the Top Picks, and the vote is secret and you can vote ONLY once.

    We could keep the 5 picks just to showcase our favorites.

    • Cara said

      this is an interesting idea, nella but I’m a little iffy about it. I’ve gotten so used to picks and how the system works i think changing how you got to the top would draw a whole mess of drama! maybe we could have more than the top five like an extra top five for a different sorta ranking to test it out.

      • Nella said

        I don’t know. I just think voting would give everyone a fair chance 🙂

        If we do it in the right way.

      • Cara said

        yeah i guess if we did it like we each had a certain amount of pieces we had to read and there were no names so we couldn’t see who even wrote the piece. that might work. the true talent would def get up there. i’m just worried how that would change inkpop. it would be completely different…

    • Peyton said

      I don’t want anything else except ENJOYMENT from this website. Nothing more. No badges.. e_o

      Even if they didn’t show the user, some people will remember which book is whose (duh). Or this.

      “Oh look a vampire story,” *Clicks one star*


      “Ew, I hate that genre” *Clicks one star*

      Many things can go, very, very badly. Or a person that hates another, they remember their novel, then, BAM! They may make multiple accounts, and vote one.

      You. Never. Know.


      What if your advertising? They’ll know it’s your project if it doesn’t show your user.

      What about swapping? They won’t know what your project is!
      What if a person is desperate? And makes a ton of accounts and vote for themselves. Yes, people may do that with picks, but BARELY anymore.

      Yes, It’s happened before, but it wouldn’t have as much affect as voting. Think about that.

      Oh, and the trendsetter ranks? That’s what Trendsetters are for! Picking books! So what about that? It just suddenly disappears? No!

      Just pointing out some problems….


      • Nella said

        Or it could be for the better. No one is immature enough to do that.

      • NightWriter said

        I don’t think this part of the system needs to change. In a sense, having picks in the first place is just like voting, so I don’t think it would make any difference. It would probably just make it more confusing.

  19. Cara said

    I think it would be cool that after we make our revisions that our editor suggests to be able to resubmit to maybe a different section on inkpop for only former top five books b/c i’d feel bad bumping people out who’ve been trying for forever to make the top with my book that’s already been reviewed.

    and idk if this has been mentioned before or not but i think we should be able to change the format of the project b/c sometimes ppl upload short stories that are intended to be books before they get the 10k. i think we should be able to switch it to a book once we have enough words.

    as for the badges idk how that would work. It’s a good idea but i’m worried it would be another one of those popularity things more than actually recognizing somebody who deserves it and also it could make those who don’t recieve badges feel left out or something.

    just my thoughts. :]

    • Evie said

      Mega agree with that top five thing! Or maybe be able to resubmit to them after so much time. A few months? Of course, only once. We don’t wanna swamp them. haha! But, yes, that would really be helpful!

    • MIC said

      It would be cooler than words if we could re-submit in a different place after a certain amount of time. For me, my review was SO helpful and I’d love to have another chance for the editor to see the progression and changes!!!!!

  20. Nilsya said

    The badges is a great idea. I think there should be a badge for like… Oh I don’t know. Ask someone smart. I think it is a good idea though.

  21. Jennifer LoGalbo said

    I don’t know about a badge system. Think about Ebay and how a user is rated. I think the same should apply here, but on different merits: timely returned swaps, provides detailed and helpful comments on work, would recommend to others to have this inkpopper critique work.

  22. Ezmirelda said

    I think that it would be a great idea if you could make the comments for stories be seperate for each chapter. It would be easier to give feedback on specific chapters that way. As for the badges I’m not sure if I really like the idea but it seems to be great for encouraging people.

  23. Rach said

    Aside from definitely being an issue of very little concern at this time, I think that badges would have a really negative effect on inkpopper-to-inkpopper relationships and how the site opperates as a whole. Personally, I would most definitely NOT be motivated to earn badges; I work and read at my own pace. If someone saw that I didn’t have a badge but someone else did, would they be more likely to go to the person who did have the badge for a swap? Probably. I think that awarding badges for people who return swaps quickly and participate in forums or whatever other criteria was being considered is an extremely lopsided system. However, if it was an accomplishment badge, like for putting up a certain number of projects, getting published, or making the top five, I think that would be fine. Badges should also not be rewarded for finishing a book because some people will finish a project and not want to post the whole thing.

    I love the chat-box idea. I have friends that I actually know personally on here and so many times we’ll start a convo through each other’s messages, but it will take a turn and we’ll end up switching to email or texting so other people won’t see it. Well, there are people on here that I want to talk with but don’t know personally, and I can’t do that as easily because more often than not it would require a swap of email addresses or phone numbers that anyone could then see. Also, the message boxes get so filled with read requests and/or swap-related messages that sometimes it’s hard to filter out someone who actually wants to converse with you.

    I would very much enjoy if we could move projects that we’ve posted to different places on the My Projects list. A lot of times, it’s just the first project on the list that gets viewed, but being the oldest project, it may not be the greatest example of the writer’s work, seeing as with each new undertaking, our skills improve. A friend of mine just removed a project from the top of her list because she would rather it not be up than have it be the default project people chose to view when looking at her page. In my opinion, that was poorly designed when the site was first made.

    One last thing: although I love the idea of a list at the bottom of the page acting as a to-read list, if it was public, it could be viewed as a wall of shame for those who are slow returning swaps (and sadly, I have a very secure place among these ranks). If it was a private list for the use of the account owner only, I would love to see it.

    ****I didn’t mean to knock anybody’s ideas, I just see problems arising. Devil’s advocate, please don’t shoot the messanger****

  24. Ricki said

    I could see the badge system becoming a little too much of a competition and people just posting “good job” comments in order to get a badge, or posting work that need serious…work, just to get a badge.
    What I would really love to see is a way to reorder our works on our profile. Everyone seems to choose to read my first story, but I do have some works farther down on my list that I am proud of and would love to have read, so I wish I could move them towards the top so they might get some notice when people stop by for a swap read or whatever.

  25. Sela said

    I think there should be different sections for the Pick Lists.
    You get five spaces for your favorite books, five for your favorite poems, and five for your favorite short story. Or perhaps only three. It would make ranking everything a bit easier, and make it fair for those who donate their time to only one type of writing.

  26. Lycanthrope said

    Lot’s of great points mentioned. Thanks for asking us 🙂

    The badge system would be interesting. Like pointing out the Inkpoppers that deserve recognition but quicker than IotW (still think that’s one of the best things about the site besides writing help).

    I think you should be able to change short stories to books. A lot of people start a book out as a short story, but when it reaches book format they have to do all their hard work over again.

    It would also be cool if we could rearange our projects on our pages, so we can put our favorite works at the top and our more hobby-like works closer to the bottom.

  27. Lycanthrope said

    Oh, and we should have something for reccomendations too. We can (understandably) only pick a certain number of books at a time, but I’d still like people to know what my personal favorites are.

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